Common Agricultural Policy

A plan to liberalise the EU sugar market, one of the most highly subsidised aspects of European agricultural policy, has been thrown into doubt after lawmakers rejected a proposal to end production quotas by 2015.

The European Parliament’s agriculture committee voted instead on Wednesday by a margin of 32 to 11 to extend the quotas until 2020. Some observers predicted they could last well beyond that.

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Sweden’s European Union presidency hasn’t even started yet, but people in Brussels are already saying that the Swedish presidency website is the most impressive that any EU country has so far come up with.  Its homepage is clean, simple and intelligently presented, and the entire site is nice and easy to navigate.

I particularly like the section “The EU in our daily lives”, which is a slideshow of 15 photographs that attempt to explain how EU laws and activities shape so much of everyday European life.  It kicks off with a snapshot of a rather lugubrious-looking dog and the caption: “Dogs and cats travelling within the EU must have their own pet passports.” Read more